Buying pre-owned things is no longer embarrassing. It's a win-win situation for both the customer and the seller, especially when it comes to luxury bags. Previous owners care about their purses so much, so buyer typically gets a coveted item in an excellent condition. Once you decide to buy a Dior purse and open websites, you find yourself under the flood of advertisements.
Choosing a style of bag is a matter of taste but choosing a real purse requires a trained eye and attention. Here's a full guide for those who want to be an expert in authenticating Dior. These 12 steps will help you identify a real gem from cheap stuff.
Let's get started!
Step 1. Overall Quality
The first general advice for each luxury purse, and Dior is not exception, is to check the overall quality of it. We know how much love, devotion, and hard labor are put into crafting every piece of a high-end bag, so it never looks awful. Even a pre-loved Dior bag keeps its shape. If the purse you're offered is poorly structured, then you are looking at a fake. Some items from the fashion house have signature shape and size (like the famous Saddle bag, for example), and you can compare measurements using information on the official Dior website.
Materials are of great importance, too. Dior uses only high quality leather and materials with no glossy finishing. It's better to touch item, and even not an expert would easily tell the difference. Good leather is pleasant and soft, it makes you wanna touch the bag again and again. Plenty of details can be replicated but it's impossible to counterfeit the quality of the materials. Fake goods are made fast using cheap leather, their purpose is quick sale and easy profit. Each Dior items is a masterpiece and is worth a lot of effort and money.
Step 2. Stitching
Little details matter so much! You need to look as closely as possible, examine every corner of the bag before purchasing it. Checking stitching plays a vital part in authentication. Counterfeiters can't do the iconic Dior stitching right. There's always a mistake somewhere, and your task is to find it!
What do fakes fail to copy?
- Color of threads. When you hold a real Dior you might notice that stitches always match the leather or the lining. They are the exact same shade, the exact tone as materials. Counterfeit manufacturers find it hard to match threads and leather.
- Quality of stitches. Hastily done bag would reveal itself by crooked and uneven stitching, often with threads sticking out. Different lengths of stitching also means the bag is a counterfeit.
- Pattern. If you are examining a beautiful Lady Dior pay attention to its special cannage quilting. On fake purses threads are deeply embossed into the leather, while Dior artisans never ruin leather with stitching. Also pay attention to the pattern itself, it's quite hard to replicate.
Step 3. Handles
Luxury for the fashion houses means high class and quality in everything, in every single detail. Handles is another thing to examine when spotting a fake. This feature is mostly important when dealing with the iconic Lady Dior (if you are not a big fan of this model, here are top 10 most iconic Dior bags that you will never regret buying). The main feature of Lady Dior handles is their steadiness, they never fall on sides. They are rigid, never soft. Also check stitching on the handles, it might give away a poor quality purse. If you have a chance to compare a real and a fake, you would notice that fakes often have wider and thicker handles.
Step 4. Hardware
Authenticating a Dior purse only by its hardware is a tricky plan. The only thing common for all Dior hardware is its exceptional quality. Goldish coating on fake hardware tends to peel off with time, while on authentic purse it remains the same. Hardware on real bags is never shiny, nor cheap-looking. But it gives you the impression of a vintage piece.
Small features, like branded embossing, can be different depending on the style and size of the purse. For example, on small Saddle bags it's just initial letters of the fashion house founder, while on larger models the full name of Christian Dior is embossed. Hardware is typically solid, sound and heavy if you are holding a real bag, but you don't have to be an expert to know that.
Step 5. Zipper Pull
A lot of fashion houses use an ordinary leather zipper pull but Dior came up with something special for two of their most popular high-end purses. Lady Dior has a jewelry-like oval zipper pull with 'CD' letters on it. Some models of Saddle bag have a leather pull with the name of the fashion house stamped on both sides.
Step 6. Charms
Charms add elegance and feminine look to Dior bags. And, of course, counterfeiters do their job poorly when copying them. A real charm set consists of four letters forming a name of fashion house and an oval leather tag a bit bigger than the letter 'O'.
The rules for hardware also apply for charms. They should not be too glossy or shiny. The ring that holds the charms should be stable on a real bag, while letters themselves can be moved (but not too much).
Step 7. Leather Tag
Another feature you should pay attention to in a Dior bag is the interior tag which is located inside the purse. Each tag has a rectangular shape with slightly rounded corners. If you see a rectangle with straight angles, it's definetely a fake. Pay attention to the stitches, after 1990 the fashion house started to make them around the leather tag. Before it had only one line of threads on the top. Some models (like Dior Book Tote) have no stitching at all.
Step 8. Heat Stamp
Heat stamp is found on the front of the interior tag, and depending on the model there can be two or three lines. It says: 'Christian Dior' with 'PARIS' in capital letters a bit below, and for some purses 'MADE IN ITALY' or 'MADE IN SPAIN' beneath (also only capital letters). They can be both stamped with no color or embossed with silver or golden letters. Letters should be clean and easy to read, with no color outside their edges. The logo should be centered and not spread from one side to the other.
Step 9. Date Code
The date code is also located on the leather tag but on the back side. This is a special combination of digits, letters and dashes. Counterfeit manufacturers care less about this detail, so quite many of them get the combination wrong.
The order is typically as follows:
- two digits
- two letters
- four digits
Every part is separated from another by dashes.
Sometimes in latest collections you might find a date code consisting of two letters and four digits separated by a space, so be careful when authenticating the item yourself.
The date code is not the same as the serial number, all combinations have a certain meaning. The last four digits indicate the month and the year when the bag was manufactured. The first and the third digit indicate the month of production, while the second and the fourth indicate the year. For example, 18-MA-0156 means that the item was manufactured in May 2016.
To learn more, check out how to read Dior serial numbers.
One more thing to pay your attention to when authenticating a Dior bag is the fonts and the size of the date code. The font should be clear and even, with capital letters only, and no big spaces between dashes and numbers. The code should be strictly in the center of the tag.
Step 10. Fonts and Logo
A fake Dior would reveal itself in unique details that are hard to copy. Fonts on fake items have nothing in common with original Dior. Sloppy and tall symbols indicate a fake. Also, look closely at the logo. On counterfeit goods the logo might be shifted to one of the sides of the leather tag, capital letters may be too big or even blended together. The original logo is accurate, centered and each letter is clear and stands by itself. Look at the way the logo was done on the leather tag, authentic bags have their logos embossed in silver, golden or no color. Fake manufacturers do a cheap printing that wears off easily.
Step 11. Authenticity Certificates
For proper authentication examining the purse itself is not enough. Each original purse comes with a card to show its authenticity. They resemble a credit card in a shape but made of more paper-like material. This certificate is an easy way to tell if you're buying a real item, because producers of fake bags don't actually care about the quality of such things. A card is of grey color and comes with an envelope and a care booklet for a new bag, but don't be suspicious if there is no booklet while buying a secondhand item. If you have a booklet, make sure it's in three languages (English, Chinese, and French).
The certificate reads 'Christian Dior' on its front, and has information unique for each item on the back. That's why there are several rectangular boxes (to fill the date and the place of sale). Typically, on counterfeit cards there is one row of two boxes on the bottom, but this is where manufacturers get it wrong. A real card has a spacious rectangular box at the right bottom side (for store stamp) and two smaller boxes on the left (for date and special reference).
Step 12. Dust Bag
The last but not the least thing to examine is a dust bag. Surprisingly, it can tell more about the authenticity of the bag than you think! The look of the dust bag has changed over years but remained of the same exceptional quality. They are made of cotton, but might have different logos and even a picture. Most dust bags now only have the word 'Dior' on the front in grey color.
Older models might come with a dust bag reading 'Christian Dior' and 'PARIS' beneath it. A beautiful Lady Dior in some cases comes with a stunning dust bag with the image of a swan at the right bottom side and the name of the fashion house on the left. The color of the picture and the logo on these dust bags are black. Inside each there is an interior tag to be found.
Now you know the basics of spotting a fake Dior bag. Be sure to examine all of the features when buying a pre-loved item. Keep in mind that details might change with time, so it's better to spend a little and hire a professional to authenticate the bag for you. It would seem a non-significant amount compared to the loss of hundreds of dollars in case of purchasing a counterfeit.
If you need to authenticate a Dior item, please order one of the three types of authentication:
Verbal Authentication $10
- good when you need a certificate for any reason,
Certificate of Authenticity $25
- good when you need a certificate for any reason, either to sell the bag with the peace of mind or to return a fake bag to the seller if you purchased a fake
- includes a permanent certificate on lvbagaholic.com
Certificate of Authenticity with a thorough explanation $50
- good when you need a certificate and you need to know why the bag is authentic/not authentic for any reason, either to sell the bag with the peace of mind or return a fake bag to the seller if you purchased a fake.
- includes a permanent certificate on lvbagaholic.com
- includes an explanation of why the item is fake (detailed pictures and comparisons with an authentic bag, more than 10 pics included)
PLEASE CHOOSE ONE OF THE OPTIONS BELOW